Memorial Day is one of those holidays that sneaks up on you. It doesn't receive a lot of fanfare and sometimes seems to be a holiday created solely so retail stores can hype another sale.
Of course, its purpose is to honor those who gave their lives defending our country, but it is also the day that traditionally marks the transition from spring to summer.
For most people, the decidedly wet holiday weekend probably passed quietly. That is, unless you were part of the horde that descends upon Ocean City for the ritual advent of summer celebration.
So, with Memorial Day behind us and summer just ahead, here are a couple of Columbia happenings to note on your summer calendar.
On June 29 from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m., the Harper's Choice Community Association invites everyone to enjoy an evening with the world renowned Phileutonia, the Royal City Band of Helmond, the Netherlands.
The band will be joined by the Columbia Concert Band for this free concert to be held in Joseph Square.
After the concert, the public is invited to join with the members of both bands for a chicken barbecue dinner, with entertainment provided by the Columbia Jazz Band.
Dinner tickets are $15 per person and must be purchased in advance.
For additional concert information, and for dinner reservations, call 964-2982.
Columbia's cultural and ethnic diversity makes it a distinctive and interesting place to live. Our community's diverse heritage will be recognized July 29 with a celebration called Columbia International Day, "A Multi-Cultural Experience."
The day's events will begin with a "mini-summit" and festival from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. in Harper's Choice Village Center, where Columbia residents will have the opportunity to meet visiting students and their chaperons from Columbia's sister cities, Cergy Pontoise in France and Tres Cantos in Spain.
The summit and festival in Harper's Choice will be followed by a celebration from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. at the Lakefront in Town Center.
Columbia residents and businesses are encouraged to get involved in Columbia's International Day. Entertainment of all types is needed, as well as arts and crafts displays. Scout troops, community groups, area merchants and individuals are all invited to display or sell items.
If you would like to participate in this international gala, please call Carol Wasser at 715-3161.
On the subject of international visitors, host families are needed for students from Spain who will be visiting from July 5 through Aug. 1.
This is an excellent opportunity for you and your family to reach out and gain firsthand knowledge of someone from the Spanish culture.
If you would like to serve as a host family, please call Sondra Taylor at 997-5012, or Judy Stephenson at 461-6675.
Emma Andrews, a student at Atholton Elementary School, applied her math skills in the Provident Bank of Maryland Math Mania Final Challenge Round, and the result was big bucks for her school.
She was a member of one of three math teams that tied for second place. Thanks to Emma, Atholton Elementary will receive a share of the $18,000 combined prize awarded for second, third and fourth place in the contest.
The Atholton High School Pom-Pons will offer a weeklong dance camp this summer for girls ages 8 to 14. The camp will be held at the school Aug. 14-18, from 9 a.m. to noon each day.
Students will be taught a variety of pom-pon and related dance routines. Certificates of completion will be awarded.
The fee is $70 if registration is received by tomorrow.
For more information or to register, please call Alycia Carlson at (301) 937-4048.
Scott Sebor, a student at Wilde Lake Middle School, was a guest at the recent Earth Day XXV celebration in Washington, D.C., where he was awarded a first-place trophy in an essay contest explaining "Why We Should Celebrate Earth Day."
The essay contest was sponsored by the Howard County Earth Day Coalition, the Environmental Committee of St. John Roman Catholic Church and Environmental Education Concepts Inc.
Bethany Anderson, a 1992 graduate of Atholton High School, was named to the fall semester dean's list at Wake Forest University in North Carolina. Ms. Anderson is a junior at the university.
According to Wendy Tzucker, Harper's Choice village manager, a new eatery, Gringada Mexican Restaurant, will open early this summer and will serve traditional Mexican fare.